Tuesday, July 22, 2008

This One Time ... at Tennis Camp

My ass is (artificial) grass

Today went fairly well but the toll it's taking on my body is already pretty brutal. After a 7:45 breakfast (I know, more brutal than the tennis itself!) we all reported to the courts by 8:30 and were divided into groups. Total Tennis tends to attract a fairly inexperienced bunch of tennis enthusiasts ("Saddlebrook" meets "Dirty Dancing," as one person put it), so Bill and I were put in the top group along with another guy from Long Island. Our teaching pro, Sef, had us doing drills straight through till lunch and then playing some King of the Court during the afternoon session. It was intermittently cool and pleasant, then raining, then brutally hot, but neither my brother nor I felt really beat until we made the mistake of stopping for the day(!) and that's when the reality of it all set in. Granted, I run about two miles five days a week. But there's something very different about stopping and starting and moving from side to side for hours on end that is completely different from running in a straight line -- and now I swear I can barely stand up straight. And despite my efforts to avoid them, my well-bandaged feet are still blistered beyond belief and I think my back went out while reaching for an overhead smash (I'm old!). Tomorrow I have my private lesson BEFORE breakfast (god help me) and then later in the day we get to watch the video footage that was taken of us today (always good for a few laughs). Several people at the camp as well as several readers suggested I not take my tennis so seriously and "just have fun" up here. Needless to say fun is the furthest thing from my mind when I'm out there not playing as well as I'm sure I should be able to, despite my utter lack of preparation and nearly non-existent court time over the past decade. (Facetiousness intended.)


Peter Chan said...

I'm jealous. Always wanted to go to tennis boot camp. Next year, I'm signing up. I hate hitting overhead balls.... Anyway, have "fun" with the rest of camp.

Steve said...

Reading this post, I have to ask a question....why do you go to this camp? It doesn't sound like you're having a smashing time at all.

Back when I was 20 or so, I played quite a lot of tennis, always trying to get better. And after a few months/years of frustration over not being able to ever serve an ace (or hit a forceful backhand), I just gave in to the fact that I just wasn't meant to be a great tennis player. But it didn't stop me from having fun playing it. (Just don't ask me how pissed I'd get when my taller friends aced me).

Johnnie said...

I think you should just have fun. Get some sun on those arm ;o)

Jim said...

I'm right there with you this morning. Had class last night from 7:30-9:00. Stayed til almost 10PM and now I'm having a hard time moving.

I bike to and from work, lift and do cardio at the gym, but I have never felt like this.

Ugh, Sucks to get old!

Anonymous said...

I've played on artificial grass once in my life at some rich dude's house in Princeton.

Wow, I though I knew what a "fast court" meant until I played on that surface.

However, the guy who owned the place didn't know how to handle a skidding slice serve, and I suddenly understood how Martina N. won all those singles titles.

Sounds like they're working your cute tush off. Hang in there!